Date of Current Revision: November, 2003
Primary Responsible Office: Academic Affairs
Secondary Responsible Office(s): Affirmative Action, Human Resources
This policy has been developed in accordance with state and federal law to provide uniformity in the hiring process for faculty members. Compliance is required for all faculty hires, unless otherwise specified herein.
The Board of Visitors has the authority to make all rules and regulations concerning the employment of individuals to work for the university. Where the board has not enacted rules, the authority is delegated to the President.
This policy relates to the hiring of all faculty members, including Instructional Faculty as well as Administrative and Professional (A&P) faculty. This policy applies to all faculty appointments, including full-time and part-time appointments; adjunct and visiting appointments; tenured, tenure-track, renewable term, and untenured appointments; academic year, calendar year, fixed term appointments and interim appointments. (However, please note that the procedures detailed in this policy for a full search are not required for part-time appointments, interim appointments or full-time appointments of less than one year - such as visiting faculty, faculty on short-term contracts or temporary replacements for faculty on leave.)
Administrative & Professional Faculty (A&P faculty)
Administrative faculty and professional faculty are normally referred to collectively, as both require advanced learning acquired by prolonged formal instruction and/or specialized training and work experience. However, the university recognizes administrative faculty and professional faculty as distinct position types.
Administrative Faculty positions are generally senior administrators who perform work related to the management of the educational and general activities of the university, for at least fifty percent of their work. Typically, administrative faculty serve in executive leadership roles such as vice president, provost, vice provost, dean, assistant or associate vice president, assistant or associate vice provost, or assistant or associate dean. Other administrative faculty roles can include (1) those responsible for the administrative direction of separately designated divisions or departments of institutional activity; (2) positions whose primary responsibility is to attract external funds; or (3) positions that are characterized by active, continuing involvement in formulating, interpreting and implementing institutional policy and exercise substantial independence, authority and discretion in areas such as program planning, design and allocation of resources. The organizational reporting relationship for administrative faculty is normally not lower than three levels below Executive Council positions. For Academic Affairs, this would include: Vice Provost/Dean (level 1), Academic Unit Head/Director (level 2) and Associate Director (level 3).
Professional Faculty require advanced learning and experience acquired by prolonged formal instruction and/or specialized work experience. Typical professional faculty positions are librarians, counselors, coaches, physicians, lawyers, engineers and architects. Other professional positions may support education, research, University Life and other such activities. Professional faculty positions must require the incumbent to regularly exercise professional discretion and judgment and to produce work that is intellectual and varied and is not standardized.
The establishment of a contractual relationship, even if on an at-will basis or for a limited time, between a faculty member and the university.
The required appropriate forms, transcripts, certificates, etc for acceptance of an offer, either mentioned explicitly in this policy or otherwise required by the Office of Affirmative Action.
The official communication to the faculty candidate from the appropriate university official notifying the candidate that the position is presented for acceptance.
Sometimes referred to as ‘Teaching and Research Faculty” this is a faculty member whose primary responsibility is teaching, research and service. Instructional Faculty also have specific guidelines for employment set forth in the University Faculty Handbook.
The process of hiring faculty members at James Madison University, from search through hiring, is guided by a specific set of guidelines and procedures that must be followed to ensure fairness, accountability and the continuing presence of an outstanding teaching faculty. Faculty appointments are subject to approval by the Board of Visitors.
Once a candidate has been identified as the person who will receive an offer, the appropriate university official will contact the candidate to make the offer. The offer is subject to approval by the next level of supervision before the offer is extended.
Official Transcripts & Other Hiring Documentation
1. At the time of the offer, the appropriate university official will inform the successful candidate of the documentation necessary to accept the offer. Unless and until the candidate provides appropriate documentation that is satisfactory to the university, the offer may be withdrawn by the university.
2. For all Instructional Faculty and for Administrative & Professional Faculty who will be teaching a for-credit course or for whom it is likely that teaching will be part of future job responsibilities, documentation will consist, at a minimum, of the following items:
3. In addition to the documentation provided by the candidate, the hiring department will be responsible for any additional documentation required by the Office of Affirmative Action and the full completion of a PAR form.
4. For all Administrative & Professional Faculty who will not be teaching a class, documentation will consist, at a minimum, of the following items:
5. Failure by the successful candidate to provide the appropriate documentation may result in the withdrawal of the offer, even if the candidate has attempted to formally accept the offer
6. When a candidate does not fulfill the official transcript documentation requirements for a position that is accepted less than 60 days prior to the start of the employee’s first teaching semester, the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs may choose to honor the offer for no more than sixty days, with continuation of employment contingent on the candidate’s successful completion of all official transcript documentation requirements.
To hire a faculty member without appropriate official transcript documentation (for whatever reason), hiring officials must complete the Emergency Hire Form (Addendum 1) in order to request this option. If the university does not receive the appropriate official transcript(s) within sixty days of the start of the semester, the faculty member will be terminated. A faculty member terminated under such conditions will not be eligible for further employment. This Emergency Hire Form option is not available to employees who accept a position more than 60 days prior to the start of their first teaching semester.
7. Hiring officials may not waive the timely presentation of the immigration documentation or the official transcript.
8. No faculty member will be hired unless and until all documentation is received or an Emergency Hire Form is approved.
9. In the event that the candidate is hired in anticipation of, but prior to having fulfilled all requirements for a particular degree, such as a Ph.D., the candidate should provide the official transcript of the highest degree attained to date and has a duty to provide the official transcript of the pending degree within 15 working days after it is awarded. Failure to provide the official transcript of the degree may result in termination or non-renewal.
10. When the official transcript is coming from a foreign institution, the following time frames apply:
When a candidate whose degree is from a foreign institution does not fulfill the official transcript documentation requirements for a position that is accepted less than 180 days prior to the start of the employee’s first teaching semester, the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs may choose to honor the offer for no more than 180 days, with continuation of employment contingent on the candidate’s successful completion of all official transcript documentation requirements. To hire a faculty member without appropriate official transcript documentation (for whatever reason), hiring officials must complete the Emergency Hire Form in order to request this option. If the university does not receive the appropriate official, translated foreign transcript(s) within 180 days of the start of the semester, the faculty member will be terminated. A faculty member terminated under such conditions will not be eligible for further employment.
6.2 Appointments and Contracts:
Faculty appointments are official when a signed contract is issued by the president and accepted by the appointee and returned to the university with the faculty member’s signature, or for an at-will faculty member, when the faculty member begins work in the position. For details see the Faculty Handbook.
The contract procedure shall be as follows:
The university has created a series of contract templates for the varying categories and types of faculty contracts. Hiring supervisors must use one of these templates exactly as it is configured. If a hiring supervisor desires to alter one of the templates in any way for any particular candidate, it must have the vice president’s prior approval to do so. Contract templates are available through the Human Resources website.
Deans, department heads, search committee chairs and hiring supervisors are responsible for knowing and understanding this policy and following it carefully through the search and hiring process. They are also responsible for ensuring that accurate documentation accompanies the hiring of every faculty member.
Where the official transcript of the highest degree attained does not match the faculty member’s teaching assignment, the hiring department is responsible for submitting a ‘statement of justification’ to Human Resources for inclusion in the employee’s file.
When hiring a candidate who has completed all coursework for a doctoral degree except for the completion of the dissertation, the search committee chair, dean, or hiring supervisor is responsible for receiving the official transcript of the highest degree attained at the time of the offer in addition to ensuring that the official transcript of the doctoral degree is received in Human Resources within 15 days after the candidate is awarded the degree.
When the official transcript of an employee being offered a position is not submitted, the search committee chair or hiring supervisor is responsible for completing an ‘Emergency Hire Form’ and submitting it to Human Resources.
The hiring department is responsible for the management of the contract process, including sending the signed original to Human Resources at the end of the contract process.
Human Resources is responsible for creating contracts where appropriate and for placement of received contracts into the appropriate employee’s personnel file.
Persons who do not comply with this policy are subject to discipline, up to and including termination.
For the specific hiring procedures to fill the positions of Academic Unit Head, Associate and Assistant Dean, Dean, Administrative and Professional Faculty members in the office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the position of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, see the Faculty Handbook, Section III.C.
In some cases, professional licenses or certificates may substitute for official transcripts. By way of an example, a CPA designation or a state license to practice medicine may suffice in lieu of an official transcript because these represent required knowledge and or degree attainment. Final determination on licenses or certificates will be made by the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.
While the authority to interpret this policy is granted to the President, it is generally delegated to the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Original Version: December 5, 2001
Updated January, 2002
Dr. Linwood H. Rose, President
Index of Terms
Emergency Hiring Form